Jamaica Gleaner
Published: Sunday | April 10, 2011
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A celebration of friends and friendships
From left: James Hathaway, Francine Haughton, Marilyn Hathaway and Robert Hathaway make a happy picture.
Chester Francis-Jackson, Contributor

Self-imposed restrictions dictated by calendar events such as birthdays, and anniversaries, and moments dictated by professional, scholastic and familial commemorations are the usual reasons to throw a party. And as these events are cyclical, it robs those wedded to this way of life of that 'wow' factor, making their daily existence one of humdrum and predictable monotony!

Not so, however, for life's bon vivants, and life members of the international uber class! As it is in the rest of the world of the fabulous, so it is here in Kingston, Jamaica, where members of the ruling and social elite need no other excuse to host a party, other than the simple reason of 'just because'! This is perhaps the single best reason to throw a party. In doing so, it provides the host with a carte blanche to decide on theme, guests and general tone of the party. Not bound by the conventions based on the accepted socialised practices associated with cyclical celebrations and the mandatory expectations that are attendant to these occasions!

As one of upper St Andrew's leading arbiter and social pillars, second generation advertising agency owner and the honorary consul of Iceland, Robert MacMillan, is a man of convention, guided by a sense of duty and service to community and fellow man. It is this sense of duty which has seen him serving Rotary Club and Rotary International with distinction and as dean of the Consular Corps of Jamaica for one term only, opting not to seek re-election and thus facilitate the ascension to that post by others. A loyalist based on the tenets of old-fashioned principles of honour, service and love of country, he set store to the amity and bond of friendship while embracing the spirit and nature of the bon vivant, secure in his own accomplishments and ready to celebrate those of others!

And so on Saturday, April 2, the erstwhile raconteur threw open the doors to his fabulous hacienda-styled home for what was a fabulously intimate haute swelleganza of the finest order! Dears, it was quite the smasheroni, with those in attendance, including Kingston's leading citizenry, leading members of the diplomatic corps and consular corps. Talk about fab!

Guests entered the home to the welcomingly melodies of Andres Lopez on keyboard, and the resident concert grand as his muse, the talented young musician hit the right notes all evening long and as evening became night, he simply mellowed! Luvs, The Jamaica Pegasus hotel catered, so you know we are talking a simply marvellous fusion of the tropical and cosmopolitan, here with premium libations only a nod away. But luvs, the belle of the 'ball' was undoubtedly the red velvet cheesecake specially made by Zein Issa-Nakash for the occasion. It was to die for!

It was a fab-fest and nothing but; a celebration of friends and friendships, and so there was an interlude which saw Monsignor Father Richard Albert invoking divine blessings; followed by the host, who led guests in three toasts; the first to Edward Seaga; the second to the parents of United States diplomat James Hathaway, Bob and Marilyn Hathaway, visiting from Montana; and the third, to the dearly departed friends who had made the transition from this life to the next! It was all very touching and yet sobering, as it indeed occasioned a moment of true celebration of life, friends and all the bounties afforded by both gifts!

Among those out, sharing in the beautiful fellowship were newly installed Chancellor of the University of Technology and former Prime Minister, Edward Seaga and wife Carla; Senate President Dr Oswald Harding and wife Marigold Harding, the custos of St Andrew; Opposition Member of Parliament Dr Peter Phillips; Senator Tom Tavares-Finson and wife Rose; head of the European Union Ambassador Marco Mazzocchi Alemanni and wife Fiela; British High Commissioner Howard and Gill Drake; Mexican Ambassador Leonora Rueda and companion Nigel Pagon; former Canadian High Commissioner John Robinson, on the start of his annual Jamaican vacation; the esteemed Alex and Erica Hamilton; the eminent Peggy Blades and daughter Susan Scott; legal luminary Christopher Bovell and his wife, Michelle Bovell; Cecil and Rosie McIver; Charles Hanna; Sylvia Collister; Barclay and Deidre Ewart; Richard and Diana Stewart; conglomateur Kenny Benjamin and entrepreneur Ian and Celia Levy.

We saw Honorary Consul to Israel Ainsley Henriques and wife Marjorie; Honorary Consul of Portugal Paul Issa and wife Oriente Issa; Christopher Nakash and wife the fabulous Zein Issa-Nakash; Captain Michael and Thalia Lyn, the honorary consul of Thailand, and her visiting siblings, Karen Chang, visiting from Napa Valley, California and Mary-Joy O'Reilly, visiting from Toronto, Canada; Honorary Consul of Ghana Patrick Lynch and sibling, Director of Tourism John Lynch; the charming Nicola Croswell-Mair; international legal consultant and power broker Harold Brady; legal powerhouse Peter Millingen and wife Stacy Barbar Millingen; Captain Michael and AnnMaire Feanny; the charmingly lovely Deika Morrison; businessman and philanthropist Steve Ashley; Doug and Karen Brown; Maree Sigurdson; Leicester and Belinda Levy; Richard and Simone Khouri; John Burrowes and companion Judy-Angel Markes; George and Debbie Cumming; William and Sandy Tavares-Finson; Robert Stephenson; the lovely Prudence Simpson; Martin and Carmen Schaade; Mickey Hill and his lovely companion; Francine Haughton; and heir apparent to the MacMillan advertising dynasty, Travis MacMillan; plus a number of others!

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